NASA'S CHIEF CONFIRMS IT: WITHOUT RUSSIA, SPACE STATION LOST - NASA's Administrator Charles Bolden acknowledged Wednesday there is no back-up plan to fly the International Space Station if Russia cuts off U.S. access to space.
"We would make an orderly evacuation," Bolden said during a U.S. House Appropriations subcommittee hearing. Because both countries are dependent upon one another, the $140 billion station would be lost.
It was a frank admission from Bolden who, during the last year as U.S. and Russia diplomatic relations have deteriorated, has sought to sidestep the question. More
(Source: Chron.com - Mar 6)
NASA DEPLOYS SATELLITE DESIGNED TO RE-ENTER ATMOSPHERE USING REVAMPED DRAG DEVICE - NASA mission controllers confirmed that a small satellite launched from the International Space Station at 5:30 p.m. PST on Tuesday, March 3, has successfully entered its orbit, setting the stage to test technology that could enable rapid return of payloads from space. Over the next four weeks, the TechEdSat-4 satellite will deploy a second-generation exo-brake, an aerodynamic drag device, to perform a maneuver that will cause the satellite to de-orbit and re-enter Earth's atmosphere. More
(Source: Space Ref - Mar 6)
GLITCH PUTS OFF LAUNCH OF FOURTH INDIAN NAVIGATION SATELLITE - A telemetry glitch has forced the Indian space agency to defer the launch of the fourth regional navigation satellite scheduled for March 9 onboard a lower-orbital rocket from its spaceport in Andhra Pradesh. "Launch of the fourth Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS-1D) onboard the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C27) scheduled for March 9 has been postponed due to an anomaly in one of its telemetry transmitters," the state-run Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said in a statement here on Wednesday. More
(Source: Zee News - Mar 5)
POWER SYSTEM FAILURE LIKELY CAUSE OF MILITARY SATELLITE EXPLOSION - The U.S. Air Force says a temperature spike in the power system of a nearly 20-year-old weather satellite may have led to the spacecraft's explosion in orbit, scattering more than 40 fragments of debris that could be flying around Earth for decades.
"The Defense Meteorological Satellite Program Flight 13 (DMSP 13) reached end of life Feb. 3, 2015, at 2:39 p.m. MST (2139 GMT)," Air Force Space Command said in a statement. "The decision was made to render the vehicle safe after DMSP operators discovered a sudden spike in temperature in the power subsystem of the nearly 20-year-old weather satellite followed by an unrecoverable loss of attitude control." More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Mar 5)
CAN YOU SPOT THE ASTRONAUT ON BOARD THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION? - Can you spot the astronaut on board the International Space Station?
The space tourist looks tiny in comparison to the giant satellite orbiting Earth.
This picture was posted on Twitter by Nasa flight engineer Terry Virts earlier today, of station commander Butch Wilmore performing maintenance during a space walk.
The two US astronauts whipped through a third spacewalk on Sunday to rig parking spots for new US space taxis. They spent five hours installing antennas, cables and navigation aides on the station's exterior truss. More
(Source: Mirror.co.uk - Mar 4)
INDIA TO LAUNCH FOURTH NAVIGATION SATELLITE ON MARCH 9 - India will move closer to its own satellite navigation system with the launch of its fourth satellite tentatively slated for March 9, a senior official of the Indian space agency said on Monday.
"The launch is tentatively planned for March 9 evening around 6.35pm. However, final green signal for the launch will be given days ahead of the satellite launch," MYS Prasad, director, Satish Dhawan Space Centre, part of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). More
(Source: Times of India - Mar 3)
U.S. WEATHER SATELLITE EXPLODES INTO 43 PIECES - The U.S. Air Force confirmed on Feb. 26 a "catastrophic event" that led to the destruction of a weather satellite on Feb. 3.
The satellite, previously used by the U.S. militar,y exploded into 43 pieces.
Engineers with the military suggest a temperature spike disrupted the satellites bearings and caused Meteorological Satellite Program Flight 13 (DMSP-F13) to lose altitude control. The oldest in the military's fleet of weather satellites, DMSP-F13 was mostly phased out of operation in 2006 -- still collecting data in a backup role but not involved in long-term modeling.
(Source: UPI.com - Mar 3)
SPACEX PUTS ELECTRIC COMMUNICATIONS SATELLITES INTO ORBIT - A Space Exploration Technologies rocket blasted off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on Sunday to put the world's first all-electric communications satellites into orbit.
The 22-story tall booster soared off its seaside launch pad at 10:50 p.m. ET, the third flight in less than two months for SpaceX, as the privately owned, California-based company is known.
Perched on top of the rocket were a pair of satellites built by Boeing and owned by Paris-based Eutelsat Communications and Bermuda-based ABS, whose majority owner is the European private equity firm Permira. More
(Source: CBC.ca - Mar 3)
RUSSIAN INTELLIGENCE GETS AN UPGRADE WITH SATELLITE LAUNCH - Russia launched a next-generation military reconnaissance satellite Friday, ushering in an era of digital mapping from orbit after decades of relying on film returned to Earth inside landing capsules.
The mission blasted off at 1101 GMT (6:01 a.m. EST) Friday from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome about 500 miles north of Moscow. A three-stage kerosene-fueled Soyuz 2-1a rocket deployed the spacecraft less than 10 minutes later, the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement. More
(Source: SpaceFlight Now - Mar 1)
EUTELSAT COMMUNICATIONS: EUTELSAT 115 WEST B SATELLITE GEARS UP FOR LAUNCH - EUTELSAT 115 West B, the first all-electric satellite for Eutelsat Communications (Paris:ETL) (NYSE Euronext Paris: ETL), is scheduled for launch by SpaceX using the Falcon 9 rocket on 1 March (22.49 - 23.34 EST, 03.49 - 04.34 UTC). Built by Boeing Defense and Space, Eutelsat's latest satellite arrived in Cape Canaveral on 25 January.
Equipped with 12 C-band and 34 Ku-band transponders connected to four service areas, EUTELSAT 115 West B will extend reach of the Americas to markets in Alaska and Canada, replacing the EUTELSAT 115 West A satellite that operates in inclined orbit at 114.9° West. More
(Source: Business Wire - Feb 27)